With a firm grip on His sovereign knitting needles, the Almighty transposed Himself into a young woman’s womb. She was a virgin, untouched by a man, and yet, somehow became the temple of the Greatest Love of all. He created Himself inside the body of the woman He created. A.W. Tozer put this profound happening this way, “Was there anything lovelier than to be the Creator of His own mother, to have made the very body that gave Him protection and bore Him at last into the world?”
God, with every stitch and loop, having already created His precious mother’s womb years earlier, created Himself there in that blessed space. God of all area and time contained to the shape of a small baby. Can you imagine the baby’s kicks, movements Mary must have felt like any other mother? Except, this baby had already experienced and, even more, created the world that awaited Him outside the womb.
Psalm 139:13 says, “For it was You that created my inward parts; You knit me together in my mother’s womb.” The verse has a whole new weight when thoughts of the unborn Christ Child are infused in it. Perhaps God spoke as He knitted, “For it was I who created My inward parts; I knitted myself together in My mother’s womb.” At the finished work, was it a smile or a tear that came upon the Father’s face?
God knew, once He created the tiny body, that Mary would then give birth to Him, and the weight of human life would fall on the child’s small shoulders. He would grow to be a young man when his shoulders would hold the weight of wise instruction in the temple. Then He would develop into a mature man when His shoulders would hold the weight of the world’s sins.
Even as God created Himself as Christ in a young woman’s womb, just as delicately and just as lovingly does He form every unborn child. He breathes life into the quickly developing lungs. He pumps the heartbeat to a steady pace to sustain the rest of the delicate figure.
The Lord God loves babies.
Did you know that? He smiles at their joy. He weeps at their neglect. He comforts their already sinful hearts. He binds their wounds with compassion. He sees every born and not yet born baby, and He loves them.
At Christmas time, it can be easy to picture this God that loves babies. It can be easy to picture Mary holding the baby Savior as we pass countless nativities in the store and at church. I can vividly remember the last time the Lord allowed me to cradle and love on a little baby.
One Friday afternoon as I volunteered at the hospital near my house, a pediatrics intensive care unit nurse asked me to come hold and feed a 7-month-old baby. We’ll call him John. John had been abused. His little hands and feet were bandaged, concealing the cruel burns forced on his helpless body. Little John, even at 7 months old, had little trust for people, having only felt pain and fear in the arms of an adult. He fought sleep. He fought food. He fought me.
I began singing to John. I sang every hymn and worship song I could think of, and before long, his small body began to relax, and his fearful shaking subsided. His dark brown eyes finally had the courage to meet mine as he grasped the milk bottle in my hand. As he drank, I could see tears build in his eyes. “What have you seen, my little brother?” I thought to myself. “Be still and feel the presence of God fall on you, little one, for you are not invisible, and you are valuable.”
These words leapt from my heart and slipped from my lips to John’s tiny ears. As I whispered them, I mourned the injustice of it all. Why should one so innocent suffer so greatly? How could God allow the precious child in my arms to bear so much of the world? Could these be the very things Mary prayed in her heart?
As she cradled the tiny Savior, did she mourn the injustice of it all? Why should Christ, so perfect, suffer for the sins of the world?
Can you picture Mary in your church’s nativity, wrapping the Christ Child in her arms? Or have you missed it? Many have already been hurtled into the “full steam ahead” mentality, with families, duties, lists and tasks in tow. I feel compelled to encourage you to love the babies in your life. Here are three ways you can reflect God’s compassion to the children around you:
- Volunteer. Your holiday time is valuable, but perhaps one Saturday afternoon you could give up the time you would have spent watching a movie or go shopping to volunteer somewhere. Hospitals, crisis pregnancy centers and your church’s nursery are teeming every week with parents and babies in need of Christ’s compassion. Would you consider calling one of those places to see how you could give of your valuable time? You could ask your church staff if there is a single parent of whom you could babysit.
- Give. Maybe you’re too busy to organize a crisis pregnancy center’s closet or to hold a baby for an hour or two at a hospital near you. That’s okay! Do you have a penny under the seat of your car or a $20 bill left over from your Christmas present fund? Reach out to places like the Hope Pregnancy Center, Oklahoma Baptist Homes for Children, Prison Fellowship’s Angel Tree, Samaritan’s Purse and your church’s nursery to provide the donation you’re able to offer!
- Sacrifice. Spend time with the babies in your life. Invest in their futures and in their walk with the Lord. Does your neighbor have a baby? Do you have your own baby? Do you have little ones in your extended or mediate family? Is one of your friends pregnant? When was the last time you told them that they’re loved? Sacrifice whatever it takes to let the babies in your life know they are valuable. Sacrifice your pride, your time, your attention, your arms, and your words.
This December, consider the reality that you will never again live out the 2018 Christmas season. This is your chance to make this year different. What will you do this holiday to show the love of Christ to the precious babies around you? For it was only a couple thousand years ago that God Himself unfurled the yarn of heaven to knit together the transposed Savior… Emmanuel, God with us.